Young Volunteers wanted

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Aged 14-24? Keen to make a difference and develop your skills?

Libraries are looking for young volunteers to help out over the busy summer holiday period.

You could help staff with the Summer Reading Challenge and talk to children about the books they’ve been reading, help with summer activities and create in-library displays. Perhaps you’ve got some good ideas about how you could help children to have fun in the library this summer?

If you’d like to be one of the 8000+ young people who volunteer in libraries every summer, ask you local library for details now or email lib.admin@wakefield.gov.uk

Double the pleasure

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Don’t miss our next author event on Wednesday 24 June when we have not one but two authors introducing their novels. The talk will start at 7.15 pm but do join us before for tea and coffee. The event is free but please contact Wakefield Library on 01924 305376 to reserve a place.

Our authors are Debbie Taylor and Robert Williams.

Debbie Taylor is the founder and Editorial Director of Mslexia. She has worked as Editor at New Internationalist and Writing Women magazines and as a writer, research­er and project manager for many organisations, including Oxfam, Anti-Slavery, BBC 2, Channel 4, UNICEF and WHO. Her novels include The Fourth Queen and Hungry Ghosts. She lives in a decommissioned lighthouse at the mouth of the Tyne with her husband and daughter.

Her novel Herring Girl is a time-slip novel investigating a century-old murder and the possibility of reincar­n­ation. It centres on a schoolboy called Ben who wants a sex-change because he believes he has literally been born into the wrong body. Debbie says ”The book is set on the bank of the River Tyne in North Shields where I live, in two main time periods: 1898 at the peak of the herring fishing boom, and 2007 over a century later. I’ve been calling it a historical paranormal romantic crime mystery – why stick to one genre when you can have four?”

Robert Williams grew up in Clitheroe, Lancashire and currently lives in Manchester. His first novel, Luke and Jon, won a Betty Trask Award, was translated into six languages and called ‘a hugely impressive debut’ in the Daily Telegraph. His second novel, How the Trouble Started, was shortlisted for the Portico Prize for Fiction. He has worked in a secondary school library, as a bookseller for Waterstones, and has written and released music under the name The Library Trust.

Into the Trees grew from a single image: that of a baby screaming inconsolably, an exhausted father holding her late in the night, comforting, singing for her, all to no avail; this is a baby that will not be soothed. It develops into a story of a traumatic night under the ancient trees of Bleasdale Forest and its aftermath. Robert says ”
I think the book is about imperfect lives. How people strive and fail, but sometimes succeed, in living the life that is in front of them, not the life they would have chosen necessarily, but that one that is there to be lived.”

Come and meet them on 24 June and contact your library if you would like a copy of either of the books to read before the event.

Get ready to rumble!

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National Bookstart Week is 8 – 14 June and this year the theme is Jungle Adventures! Join us at any of our regular storytimes to enjoy the jungle fun with lots of stories, rhymes and things to make. There’s a gift for every child to take home as well, a specially written and illustrated copy of Rumble in The Jungle by Giles Andreae and David Wojtowycz. But best of all would be lots of people spreading the Bookstart messsage that getting into the habit of sharing stories, books and rhymes every day (even for just 10 minutes) shows children that reading is a fun activity, while helping them bond with family, understand their world and get ready for school and beyond.Every little monkey deserves a story and a cuddle.

Details of regular storytimes are avilable on the ‘Bookstart Storytimes’ blog page.

Dementia Positive

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Join us at Sandal Library to meet author John Killick who has worked for many years exploring communication with people with dementia through a wide variety of arts activities He will be talking about his book Dementia Positive and sharing creative writing from people with dementia. You can find out more about his work here

Monday 15 June, 2pm

Sandal Library
Sparable Lane
Sandal
Wakefield WF1 5LJ

Free event but booking is essential please
Tel 01924 303355
Email sandallibrary@wakefield.gov.uk

Lit Fest in a Day 2015

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A one-­day celebration of reading, writing and words is coming to Featherstone this September and we want to hear from you! Your invitation
to attend an introductory public mee+ng:
Wednesday 20th May, 5pm to 6pm,
Featherstone Library,
(refreshments provided)
What’s it for? The ‘ Lit Fest in a Day’ project will be launched at this
meeting with local writer Ian Clayton, who will help introduce the project
and open a discussion about ideas for the forthcoming event, being held
this September at Featherstone Library. Who should attend? The meeting
is open to anyone who would like more information about the festival,
who has an idea to contribute, or who wants to get involved as a
volunteer. It’s an opportunity for people to see how they can get involved,
and have a say in what will be included. Make it yours! Bring your ideas
and enthusiasm to help shape this one day festival as part of Wakefield Lit
Fest. Please RSVP to suzie@beam.uk.net or just turn up on the day!

War on Weight

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Food rationing started in 1940 – how would you cope with feeding a family with such a limited supply of meat, fat and sugar? We would all be a lot healthier..people in this country ended the war healthier than they had ever been or have been since. Now you can find tips to try a healthy wartime diet today with our new War on Weight collection. There are books on wartime cookery and growing your own food as well as recreating that wartime spirit with books about using up leftovers, saving money and making over clothing. You can make a start with this recipie for the famous Woolton Pie
The books are all in stock in all our libraries so ask staff about the collection and invite Dr. Carrot and Potato Pete home with you!

Dig Dr Carrot Mrs sew Potato pete

Read Regional 2015

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It’s Read Regional time once again. Every year this scheme introduces library users to new titles by authors based in the north of England. This year there are 10 exciting titles to explore.
There are five novels:
Letters to my Husband by Stephanie Butland
The Last King of Lydia by Tim Leach
The Quick by Lauren Owen
Herring Girl by Debbie Taylor
Into the Trees by Robert Williams

Three books of poetry:
Ellen Phethean: Portrait of the Quince as an Older Woman
Helen Tookey: Missel-Child
John Wedgwood Clarke: Ghost Pot

a novel for young people, Hate by Alan Gibbons and finally a graphic novel, Sally Heathcote, Suffragette by Mary and Bryan Talbot. If you have never tried reading a novel in graphic form why not give this a try. Their graphic novel Dotter of her Father’s Eyes won the Costa Biography Award in 2013.

You can find out more about the books on the Read Regional webpage and the books are available in libraries or for some titles, as reader group sets. Lauren Owen, Debbie Willams and Robert Williams will be visiting Wakefield to talk about their books (see our What’s On page for details) and Alan Gibbons will be speaking to classes from a local school. Treat yourself to a selction of the finest new writing from the north this Spring.

Desmond Elliott Prize

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It’s always good to discover a new author and one of the best places to start is the Desmond Elliott Prize. The longlist for 2015 has been announced and includes books by debut authors that are already bestsellers and exciting titles that need this list to attract the attention they deserve. I loved The Miniaturist for it’s atmospheric portrait of 17th century Amsterdam, and The Bees (also on the Baileys Prize shortlist) is competing with A Song for Issy Bradley to be my next read. Have you read any of these books? Do post your views and reviews. The full list is

• The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah (Doubleday)

• The Bees by Laline Paull (Fourth Estate)

• Chop Chop by Simon Wroe (Viking)

• Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey (Viking)

• Glass by Alex Christofi (Serpent’s Tail)

• The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton (Picador)

• Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller (Fig Tree)

• Randall by Jonathan Gibbs (Galley Beggar Press)

• A Song for Issy Bradley by Carys Bray (Hutchinson)

• The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth (Unbound)

The Prize is presented in the name of the late, acclaimed publisher and literary agent Desmond Elliott, whose passion for finding and nurturing new authors is perpetuated by his Prize. Now in its eighth year, the award has an established record for spotting up-and-coming novelists in the UK and Ireland and propelling them to greater recognition and success. The 2014 winner was Eimear McBride, author of the much-garlanded and critically lauded A Girl is a Half-formed Thing. Other past winners include Grace McCleen, Anjali Joseph, Edward Hogan and Ali Shaw.
The shortlist will be announced on 15th May and the winner on 1st July.

Books on Prescription: Dementia

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Reading Well Books on Prescription for dementia recommends books you might find helpful if you have dementia, are caring for someone with dementia or want to find out more about the condition. The books include information and advice, help after diagnosis, practical support for carers and personal stories. The books have been recommended by health professionals and tried and tested by people with experience of dementia.

All the books are available in Wakefield Libraries and can be reserved free at a branch or online.

If you have concerns about Alzheimer’s disease or about any other form of dementia, the Alzheimer’s Society National Dementia Helpline can provide information, support, advice and referrals to other appropriate organisations. Call 0300 222 1122

Information and advice

Introduction to the Psychology of Ageing for Non-specialists by Ian Stuart Hamilton
Coping with Memory Problems by Sallie Baxendale
Alzheimers: Answers at your Fingertips by Alex Bailey
Understanding Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementias by Nori Graham and James Warner
ABC of Dementia edited by Bernard Coope and Felicity Richards
About Dementia: For People with Learning Disabilities by Karen Dodd, Vicky Turk and Michelle Christmas
Grandma by Jessica Shepherd


Living well with dementia

First Steps to Living with Dementia by Simon Atkins
Dementia Positive by John Killick
Hearing the Person with Dementia: Person-centred Approaches to Communication for Families and Caregivers by Bernie McCarthy
Chocolate Rain: 100 Ideas for a Creative Approach to Activities in Dementia Care by Sarah Zoutewelle-Morris
Pictures to Share (various titles) by Helen Bate

Support for relatives and carers

When Someone You Love Has Dementia by Susan Elliot-Wright
And Still the Music Plays: Stories of People with Dementia by Graham Stokes
Can I Tell You about Dementia? A Guide for Family, Friends and Carers with Jude Welton
Dementia: Support for Family and Friends by Dave Pulsford and Rachel Thompson
10 Helpful Hints for Carers: Practical Solutions for Carers Living with People with Dementia by June Andrews
Seeing Beyond Dementia: A Handbook for Carers with English as a Second Language by Rita Salomon

Personal stories

Dancing with Dementia: My Story of Living Positively with Dementia by Christine Bryden
Dear Dementia: The Laughter and the Tears by Ian Donaghy
Still Alice by Lisa Genova
Losing Clive to Younger Onset Dementia: One Family’s Story by Helen Beaumont
Telling Tales about Dementia: Experiences of Caring by Lucy Whitman
The Little Girl in the Radiator: Mum, Alzheimer’s and Me by Martin Slevin
But Then Something Happened: A Story of Everyday Dementia by Chris Carling

Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction

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The longlist for the Bailey’s Women’s prize for Fiction has been announced. I would love to be able to read every book on this list but I know I will have to be selective. What a great list to choose from though. There is Ali Smith and Rachel Cusk, both also nominated for the Folio Prize, Sarah Waters and Anne Tyler who already have so many fans and Emma Healey whose debut novel Elizabeth is missing was described as outstanding by the Costa Prize judges. There are quirky choices like The Bees by Laline Paull which is on my reading list already and Pythonesque comedy in The Table of Less Valued Knights by Marie Phillips, and more than one novel described as post-apocalyptic. Pictured above are the judges Shami Chakrabarti, the Director of Library, Laura Bates, writer and Founder of The Everyday Sexism Project, Grace Dent, Columnist and Broadcaster, novelist Helen Dunmore and news presenter Cathy Newman.

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Copies of all the books on the longlist will shortly be avilable in libraries so start reading and see if you agree with the judges. The shortlist will be announced on 13 April and the winner on 3 June.

Rachel Cusk: Outline

Lissa Evans: Crooked Heart

Patricia Ferguson: Aren’t We Sisters?

Xiaolu Guo: I Am China

Samantha Harvey: Dear Thief

Emma Healey: Elizabeth is Missing

Emily St. John Mandel: Station Eleven

Grace McCleen: The Offering

Sandra Newman: The Country of Ice Cream Star

Heather O’Neil: The Girl Who Was Saturday Night

Laline Paull: The Bees

Marie Phillips: The Table of Less Valued Knights

Rachel Seiffert: The Walk Home

Kamila Shamsie: A God in Every Stone

Ali Smith: How to be Both

Sara Taylor: The Shore

Anne Tyler: A Spool of Blue Thread

Sarah Waters: The Paying Guests

Jemma Wayne: After Before

PP Wong: The Life of a Banana

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